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Post-Move Advice: First Night Survival Tips

The first night after a move can be tough. You’ve worked long and hard, and all you sleeping on a bedreally want to do is settle in. But your stuff is on a moving truck somewhere. A little planning can go a long way in making your first night in your new home better. As you plan for that first night, pack both the practical and the comforting in your first night box(es). Here are some ideas for surviving your first night in comfort and style.

Make sure you have the necessities. A list of staple items you’ll need on your first night includes toilet paper, tissues, toothpaste and toothbrushes, drinking cups, and other personal toiletries for each person. Don’t forget towels, pajamas, and clothes for a couple of days. If necessary, you’ll also want to include a shower curtain and rings. And snacks are a good idea, especially if you have children.

Be sure that you have chargers for phones, tablets, computers and other electric gadgets. Phone chargers that are being used on moving day often get forgotten, so as you pack your first night box, include an extra charging cable and plug, just in case.

Plug in nightlights are a good idea, even if you don’t have young children. A new house can be disorienting in the dark, and people get injured walking into walls or doors, or tripping on unfamiliar stairs. If you need to get up in the middle of the night, strategically placed nightlights will make it safer and easier to find your way in the dark.

Think about what will make you more comfortable. Sitting or sleeping directly on the floor isn’t fun. If you have portable folding chairs already, be sure you bring those. Consider buying a self-inflating air mattress to ride out those nights before your truck arrives, and pack your favorite sheets, pillows and other bedding in the car. Make getting beds set up one of your first tasks; if you wait until bedtime, you may be too tired to bother, and end up sleeping on the floor instead. And if you’re moving into an un-air conditioned house in the summer, don’t forget to pack a fan or two.

A good trick is to make your new house feel like home, instantly. Maybe that’s blasting your favorite songs, sitting down to a favorite family game, or watching a movie. Whatever it is, make that happen. Streaming services, Bluetooth speakers, and a laptop can bring you music, movies and video games. Pack your family’s favorite board game in the car.

Think beyond pizza. There’s a reason the traditional meal the first night in a new home is pizza: It gets delivered, and you can eat it without dishes, utensils or a table. But you’re in a new home in a new city, and with food delivery apps, your first night meal options have expanded. Most meals will come with utensils and in containers you can eat out of, so find a restaurant you want to try and place an order.  

Perhaps the most important key to surviving your first night and the days until your truck arrives is remembering that it’s temporary. Since you have a delivery window rather than a delivery date, and your family will likely be without all of your belongings for more than one night. Pack enough to get you through the first week, and remember that if there are items you forgot or find you need, you can make a run to the store.        

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